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Things You’re Doing That Make Your Sciatica Worse

Welcome to our blog post dedicated to understanding sciatica and what can exacerbate its symptoms. Sciatica, a condition characterized by pain radiating along the sciatic nerve, can significantly impact your daily life.

In this article, we will delve into the various factors that can worsen sciatica symptoms. Our aim is to provide you with valuable insights, helping you identify and avoid certain activities or habits that may be contributing to increased discomfort.

Whether you’re dealing with this condition yourself or supporting someone who is, understanding these aggravators is a crucial step towards better-managing sciatica and improving overall wellbeing. Let’s explore these factors together and find ways to mitigate their impact.

If you are looking for Sciatica Chiropractic near Normandy Park, then reach out to the experts at Ascent Chiropractic. Our team can work with you to relieve the symptoms and discomfort of sciatica.

What makes Sciatica worse?

Sciatica can cause significant discomfort and can worsen over time especially if you engage in activities that irritate the sciatic nerve. Here are some things that can worsen your sciatica.

Too Much Rest

Your doctor may advise bed rest to reduce the pressure on the back and sciatic nerve. You, however, do not want to stay in bed for too long as too much rest can weaken your muscles.

Too much rest can be counterintuitive. If you lie down for prolonged periods, your symptoms can get worse, instead of improving. If you’re experiencing intense pain and feel the urge to rest your legs, it’s okay to do so in moderation. However, it’s important to avoid staying in bed for more than 48 hours at a stretch.

Sitting too Much

Prolonged sitting can irritate the sciatic nerve, triggering or worsening sciatica. People with sciatica should avoid sitting for more than 20 minutes at a time. If you have a sedentary lifestyle, get up and move every 20 minutes or so to give your sciatic nerve a break and ensure blood can flow freely to the area.

People who work desk jobs can try standing desks, take short walks around their offices every hour, or consider lunchtime walks. They can also try leg and back stretches to get blood flowing and to stretch out tight areas in their bodies.

Use an ergonomic chair that allows you to sit up with your hips and knees at a 90-degree angle and with your feet flat on the floor. Look for a height-adjustable chair with adjustable lumbar support and arm.

The Wrong Footwear

The wrong footwear (shoes with no cushion or support) can cause posture problems and stretch the hamstring, worsening your sciatica. High heels also increase your risk of a slip, trip, and fall, which can further injure your spine. To prevent problems, swap unsupportive footwear for cushioned shoes that ease pressure on your lower back and hamstring.

Bending Over Too Often

It is not advisable for people with sciatica to bend at their hips to pick up objects. When you bend over to pick objects the pressure on your spine increases. Constant bending can irritate your sciatic nerve and back muscles, worsening your sciatica. When you want to pick something up, stand straight and then slowly bend your knees and squat down, instead of leaning forward.

Lifting Heavy Objects

People with sciatica should avoid lifting objects that weigh more than 15 pounds. When lifting an object, make sure it is close to your body. If you do weight training, remember to warm up before your workouts. Use the right lifting techniques that engage your core without straining your back. Avoid exercises that stretch your hamstrings.

Wearing Tight Pants

Body-hugging pants, skirts, and shorts can increase pressure on your hips, buttocks, lower back and legs, worsening sciatica symptoms. To prevent sciatica from worsening, opt for loose, comfy clothes. Get rid of pants whose waistbands dig into your back, as they can irritate your sciatic nerve.

Carrying too Much in Your Pockets

A phone, keys, wallets and other items in your pockets could dig into your piriformis muscles and irritate the sciatic nerve (as it lies just under the piriformis muscle). To prevent your condition from worsening, avoid sitting down with heavy objects in your pockets.

How can Chiropractic Care Help with Sciatica?

Many people with sciatica turn to chiropractic care. A 2015 review of multiple studies concluded that chiropractic manipulations can help relieve several types of back pain caused by debilitating health conditions including sciatica.

Chiropractors use hands-on adjustment to realign the spine and reduce pain. In addition to reducing pain and inflammation, chiropractic care can help improve range of motion. It induces deep muscle relaxation and stimulates the body to release endorphins and other happy hormones that reduce pain and promote well-being.

Oftentimes, sciatica is caused by a herniated disk. A chiropractor can use hands-on adjustments to allow a herniated disk to rest back in position, reducing pressure on the sciatica nerve. Chiropractic care can also ease muscle spasms to ease sciatica symptoms.

As you get older, the disks in the spine can dry out and shrink, pinching or compressing the nerves in it. A chiropractor can perform spinal decompression to take pressure off the affected nerves.

Poor posture can increase one’s risk of sciatica. If you’re already living with sciatica, poor posture can cause flare-ups. A chiropractor can explain to you the right way to stand, sleep, sit, and walk. They may also recommend exercises that strengthen the back muscles so they’re able to keep disks in their place.

Ascent Chiropractic is a renowned chiropractic clinic in Normandy Park. We use a whole-body approach to care. Our techniques are designed to strengthen the entire body. To learn more, call us today at 206-241-3836


17651 1st Ave S, Suite 101
Normandy Park, WA 98148

Phone: 206-241-3836
Fax: 206-241-3967


Monday 9:00 am – 6:00 pm
Tuesday 9:00 am – 6:00 pm
Wednesday 9:00 am – 6:00 pm
Thursday 9:00 am – 6:00 pm
Friday 9:00 am – 6:00 pm
Saturday Closed
Sunday Closed

Achieving Ascent Chiropractic does not happen overnight. However, through regular chiropractic adjustments and lifestyle changes your body can be stronger, more active, and pain-free. Work with us to correct the cause of your body’s dysfunction.

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